The number of Americans with health insurance continues to rise, as the number of those without health insurance coverage hits an all-time low.
United States Department of Health and Human Services announced Tuesday that the number of uninsured Americans reached 8% this year.
The decline in uninsured Americans began last year, when Congress and President Biden signed on a $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief bill that lowered premiums and out-of-pocket costs for new or returning customers who buy plans through the Affordable Care Act’s private health insurance marketplaces.
The uninsured rate fell to just under nine percent last year as subsidies improved.
The improvement was helped by an increase in advertising and more counselors who helped sign people up for plans during last year’s open enrollment season.
“Every American has the right to the peace of mind that comes with access to affordable, quality health care,” President Biden said in a statement Tuesday about the record low rate of uninsured Americans.
Before last year, the uninsured rate had remained consistently in the double digits for decades.
The number of uninsured Americans began to decline after the ACA, which expanded Medicaid and provides health insurance to people without job-based coverage through a mix of subsidized private plans, was passed in 2010.
The Democrats finished recently a 725-page deal on climate, health care and taxes that would expand federal subsidies for people who buy private health insurance, which are credited with lowering uninsured rates.
Democrats have proposed spending $64 billion to extend those price breaks for another three years.
“We know that access to quality, affordable health care is key to healthier lives, economic security and peace of mind,” HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra said in a statement Tuesday.
About 26 million people remain without health insurance in the US Only less than 2 percent of children are now uninsured.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.